10 Tips for Improving Gut Health

Posted By Author on October 4, 2022

health guy and unhealthy gutWhen your digestive system is functioning properly, it is easy to forget the important role it plays. But your gut’s microbiome is, in fact, the foundation of your overall health.

A healthy gut has a balance of microorganisms, with a variety of bacteria needed to reduce the risk of several GI conditions – like inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), diabetes, and more.

Poor gut health can cause unpleasant systems, but there is no need to suffer in silence! Our board-certified gastroenterologists in Charleston can help, providing relief from a wide range of GI symptoms. Read on to learn more about maintaining a healthy gut, then contact our Charleston GI doctors to schedule an appointment today!

Signs of An Unhealthy Gut

Digestive diseases are incredibly common, affecting millions of Americans. From irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) to chronic heartburn, GI symptoms impact people across the country each day.

As it turns out, there are many factors that impact the health of your gut, such as diet, lifestyle, family history, and more. When your gut doesn’t have enough good bacteria, it creates the perfect environment for bad bacteria to thrive. Here are some signs that the delicate balance has been disrupted – and bad bacteria are taking over:

  • Upset stomach
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation or irregular bowel movements
  • IBS symptoms 
  • Unintentional weight loss or gain
  • Fatigue
  • Difficulty sleeping 
  • Rashes or skin irritation 
  • Mood changes
  • Extreme sugar cravings
  • New food intolerances (such as lactose intolerance)

If you’re experiencing any of the symptoms listed above, a gut bacteria imbalance may be to blame. Contact a gastroenterologist near you to learn more!  

Follow These Tips to Maintain a Healthy Gut  

Lifestyle changes may alleviate symptoms and help maintain gut health. Your Charleston GI doctor may recommend the following:

Exercise Regularly

Physical activity helps move food through your digestive system, and studies show that regular exercise can help promote gut health.

Eat a High-Fiber Diet

Processed foods and those that are high in sugar and fat are simply not good for your gut. Reduce the amount you consume, and replace them with high-fiber, nutrient-packed foods like whole grains, beans, and broccoli!

Lower Your Stress Levels 

Stress can have a negative impact on your overall health – including digestion! In fact, research shows that stress early in life can increase your risk of developing IBS. 

Take a Probiotic Supplement

Because probiotics encourage healthy bacteria growth, they are a simple way to improve gut health. Take them in vitamin form or add probiotic-rich foods to your diet, like yogurt, kombucha, and kimchi!

Eat Smaller, More Frequent Meals 

Eating too much at one sitting can overwhelm your gut and cause a variety of digestive issues. 

Stay Hydrated 

Water helps move nutrients efficiently throughout the body, so staying hydrated is undeniably important to gut health!

Get Enough Sleep 

Adequate amounts of sleep, about seven to eight hours a night, help keep your hormones balanced. Proper sleep also helps you handle stress better.

Limit Alcohol and Caffeine 

Because alcohol and caffeine are stimulants, overconsumption can disrupt the digestive process and put gut health at risk.  

Stop Smoking 

In addition to improving overall health, quitting smoking can have advantages for your gut’s bacteria balance as well.

Visit Your GI Doctor 

If you experience frequent diarrhea and constipation, schedule an appointment with a gastroenterologist near you. Here at Charleston GI, our board-certified gastroenterologist can help diagnose IBS and other issues that impact your digestion and bowel habits. 

How Does Gut Health Affect Your Mood?

You may be surprised to learn that there’s a link between your gut health and your mental state. Because the bacteria in your gut produces neurotransmitters, they have an impact on brain functions like emotion regulation, memory, concentration, and more. When gut bacteria is not in balance, your mood may suffer. Implementing the diet and lifestyle changes listed above may help, providing some relief from depression and anxiety.

Experiencing Symptoms of an Unhealthy Gut? Visit Charleston GI Today!

Research is continuing to reveal more about the impact of your gut’s microbiome on overall health. Studies show that a healthy gut can help strengthen your immune system, boost mood, improve sleep habits, and promote brain and heart health. 

If you are experiencing symptoms of an unbalanced gut, Charleston GI can help.

With four convenient locations throughout the Charleston area, we’re easy to find in West Ashley, Summerville, Mount Pleasant, and Carnes Crossroads!

Charleston GI doctors are ready 5 days a week to offer you medical relief. There’s no referral needed, so schedule an appointment today!


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